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One San Antonio girl got a surprise at school today when her dad showed up.

Staff Sgt. Shaanon Trotter spent the last 12 months in Afghanistan and surprised his daughter, Alexis, when he showed up to her fifth grade class.

I've never had the opportunity to surprise the girls like this. I thought it would be a neat thing. I'm coming up on retirement in the Marine Corps. Might be my last deployment, might not. But I wanted this to be a very special one, Trotter said.

Alexis, the youngest of four, has struggled with the pain of her last year in elementary school without her father nearby.

Really sad. Because he couldn't really help me with work, when I needed it, Alexis said.

Trotter has spent nearly 19 years in the marines.

This little girl has been from coast to coast and overseas and in and out of several schools, he said. So I can't be more proud of her. It takes its toll and it takes a special child to be able to cope with parents in the military.

In addition to surprising Alexis at school, Trotter also gave her $20 for passing her STAAR test.

Alexis said she is excited to spend time with her dad this summer and looks forward to a family trip to Disney World.

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